A guide to Deferred Payments

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1 A guide to Deferred Payments Paying for residential care or nursing care if you own your home

2 What is the deferred payment scheme? If you are a home owner moving to residential or nursing care, this scheme is designed to help you with the payment of your care home fees. The value of your property is normally included when we calculate how much you will need to pay towards your care. The deferred payment scheme means that Rochdale Borough Council will contribute to agreed care costs on your behalf, and this money will then be repaid to the council at a later date when your property is sold. This arrangement is similar to a loan and we will charge you a small amount of interest to cover our costs. Who is this scheme for? It is for home owners moving permanently into residential or nursing care who either: Do not wish to sell their home immediately or Are unable to sell their home quickly enough to pay for their care How do I become eligible for the scheme? To join the scheme: You must have been assessed by adult services as needing permanent residential or nursing care. You do not have any other assets or savings of 23,250 or more, apart from your property. You agree to Rochdale Borough Council placing a legal charge on your property and to sign any associated deferred payment agreement documentation. You must have the mental capacity to understand and sign the documentation or have given someone else authority to do this for you. You might ask a relative, friend or solicitor to act on your behalf and sign the necessary paperwork for you. To do this they must be formally-appointed by you as having either - Enduring Power of Attorney, Lasting Power of Attorney for Property and Financial Affairs, or be your Court Appointed Deputy for Property and Affairs. How much will a Deferred Payment cost? There will be an upfront fee of 500, which covers our valuation of the property and all legal fees. There is an interest charge on the amount outstanding, which is compounded daily. How does the Deferred Payment scheme work? When you go into permanent residential care the value of your home is normally ignored for the first 12 weeks of your stay when we calculate your charges. This is known as the 12-week disregard period and is designed to give you some time to decide whether you want to stay in care permanently without feeling under pressure to sell your home immediately. You will still need to contribute to the costs of your care during this period, but your financial assessment will be based on your income and any other capital. At the end of the 12 week period, if you do not wish to sell your home, or you are trying to sell it but have not been able to, you can apply for a deferred payment. You will still have to make a weekly contribution towards the cost of your care. This will depend on your income and any other assets you have. The remainder of the costs will be paid by Rochdale Borough Council; this is known as a deferred payment. Any care costs the council covers as part of a deferred payment scheme will need to be paid back when your home is sold or when you leave residential or nursing care. You can tell us you want to join the scheme when you are first assessed or at any time in the future while your property remains unsold. If you don t decide to join when you are first assessed, but change your mind later on, it is your responsibility to get in touch with us and let us know at the earliest opportunity. Please be aware that applications to join the scheme cannot be backdated. You can only be considered for the scheme from the date you apply, not when your care started, if this was an earlier date. If you choose to have a deferred payment, you will be sent a statement every six months showing the value of the outstanding debt owed to Rochdale Borough Council.

3 When must the money be repaid? The money must be repaid either: When the property has been sold or When you terminate the agreement or If you die Interest is charged throughout the period of the loan and the debt becomes payable 90 days after you terminate the agreement. How do I apply to join the deferred payment scheme? If you are planning to live in a residential or nursing home permanently following a care assessment and are thinking about deferred payment you should discuss it with the person from adult social care who is helping you with your case. If your application is successful, a contract will then be sent to you which will tell you the payment to be made under the terms of your agreement. Is there anything else I need to think about with regards to my property? You will need to maintain your property while you are in care if you are on a deferred payment agreement. This will involve continuing to pay insurance, as well as ensuring the property is adequately heated to prevent damp. You can rent your property out while you are on a deferred payment agreement. You will need to use your rental income to contribute towards your care home costs and this will reduce the size of the loan. We will allow 10% of any rental income to be disregarded in your financial assessment. This money must be used for property maintenance and other landlord-related costs. Are there any other financial aspects I need to think about? By not selling your property, you will probably not qualify for as much pension credit (for those aged 60 and older) and income support (aged 59 and under), which will increase the amount of the loan. If you enter into a deferred payment agreement and are not in receipt of income support or pension credit, you will continue to receive attendance allowance and/or Personal Independence Payment as long as you are eligible. If the loan remains unpaid 90 days after the agreement ends, then we will instigate debt recovery proceedings. We will use a Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors valuer to obtain a valuation before the start of the agreement and every year after that. Tell me more about what will happen to my property A legal charge will be secured against your property giving the council the right to reclaim the loan when it is sold. If you don t agree with the result of your property valuation, you can seek an independent valuation, but you will be required to pay for this. When a legal charge is placed on your property the debt will need to be repaid on completion of the sale. You will not be able to transfer ownership until the loan has been repaid in full. If you co-own your property and wish to join the scheme, then all co-owners will have to formally agree to this in writing.

4 What should I do if I decide I do not want to join the scheme? You do not have to join the scheme. Everyone s personal circumstances are different and after thinking about it and taking advice, you may decide that a deferred payment scheme isn t for you. What you do need to know is that by not going ahead you would have to find alternative ways to pay for your care, either by using savings or possibly selling any other assets or property. If you do not join the scheme we will still ignore the value of the property when assessing how much you need to pay for your care in the first 12 weeks of your stay. Alternative formats If you need help to understand this information, or if you require it in another format such as large print, spoken (on CD) or Braille, please call. Alternatively, please use the details below if you require it in a different language. Additional advice and help As this is an important decision for you to make, you are advised to talk it through with relatives or friends and seek independent financial and legal advice. Anything else I need to know? This leaflet cannot cover all aspects of deferred payments, as every case tends to be different. In particular you may wish to ask us for more details if you: Own more than one property. Have a mortgage or loan secured on your property. Have used your property in an equity release scheme.

5 How can I get more information? For more information, including full details of our deferred payment policy, please visit on our website rochdale.gov.uk Alternatively you can contact the Assessments & Benefits team: Assessment & Benefits Team PO Box 490 Rochdale OL16 9AJ

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